In 2019 Cargill conducted a Feed4Thought survey of consumers from the United States, China, Mexico, and Spain. In this survey, they asked consumers to identify the word that best described what they wanted a farmer to be. The survey showed 30% of respondents wanted farmers to be “sustainable.” The second most-used word to describe what […]
Studies to evaluate cocktail forage mixes were conducted in 2021 and supported by the UW Dairy Innovation Hub. Research discussed here includes collection of on-farm data from four farms growing a cocktail forage mix and a lactating cow feeding trial at the UW Marshfield Agricultural Research Station (ARS). Please refer to the “Cocktail Forage Mix […]
The nutrient needs of dairy heifers change with age and size as they approach maturity with feed intake increasing and diet nutrient concentrations decreasing (Table 1). This is due to changes in growth with heifers having a higher rate of protein growth prior to breeding with slower protein growth as they approach mature body weight. […]
A greenhouse gas is any gas in the atmosphere capable of absorbing heat from the sun and stopping it from radiating back into space. Many greenhouse gases occur naturally in our environment at low concentrations. However, human activity is increasing the concentration of greenhouse gases in our atmosphere, thereby trapping, and storing, additional heat and […]
Raising replacement heifers is a large investment for farmers to create the next generation for their herd. The cost of raising a replacement heifer on average is $2,500 with feed accounting for approximately 50% of the total rearing cost.1,2 The average age at first calving (AFC) has been decreasing in the United States because farmers […]
There are three stages to the birthing process, or parturition: dilation of the cervix, delivery of the calf, and delivery of the placenta. Knowing the normal birth process will help you decide whether or not to intervene.
Preconditioning dairy-beef calves for success as beef Various marketing opportunities exist for dairies to market dairy-beef cross calves including selling them ‘wet’ (i.e., preweaned, younger than 8 weeks of age). Dairies may retain ownership, marketing preconditioned or backgrounded feeder calves at approximately 400 or 700 lbs. Dairies may also finish beef cross cattle. Let’s take […]
Cocktail forage mixes have become popular due to their use after a cereal forage harvest, their good forage quality, and their ability to apply in-season manure. In general, cocktail forage mixes are a blend of annual grasses (warm and/or cool season) and legumes. The warm season grasses are usually sorghum-sudangrass, sudangrass, or millets, and cool […]
What is corn silage? Corn silage is a unique feed that combines high non-fiber carbohydrate (starch) and neutral detergent fiber (NDF). It does not feed strictly like a forage or a concentrate. Corn silage is also unique when looking at the NDF fraction of the feed. If corn silage is separated into its two primary […]
By Donald C. Sockett, DVM, MS, PHD, DACVIM (large animal); Wisconsin Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory, UW-Madison It is important for livestock barns, calf pens, and calf feeding equipment to be properly cleaned before the disinfectant is applied. If surfaces are not properly cleaned, the disinfection step is much less effective at killing disease-causing microorganisms. Many disinfectants […]
Deciding when and how a dairy cow departs the farm is different on every operation. Making the decision to remove a cow from the herd is not always an easy one, but determining when the cow leaves and how is equally important. Changing the vocabulary from cull cow to market cow is a way to focus on what kind of animals are leaving the dairy.
Properly applying obstetrical (OB) chains to a calf’s feet and legs is an important technique to master. Watch the video below to learn how to properly apply chains so that you are prepared when the time comes to use this technique. Always consult with your veterinarian if you have any questions. Videos are available in both English and Spanish and can be accessed directly on YouTube as well.